Archive for May, 2013

Another Friday and this week I am just not feeling it…I really just want to go home and sleep, not surface for a few days – we’ve had a lot of hits coming at us this week, namely as it pertains to our son and some behavioral issues that are causing an uproar with our jobs…why you ask? Well because he was suspended from riding the bus to the Brigades, which in turn means he’s not going to Brigades which means that my hubby and I are having to re-work our schedules to be home with him when he gets off of school…and this on the coat tails on having already paid his tuition for this week (he was suspended on Wednesday and has been out for the last two days – he won’t be returning until next Thursday)…my boss isn’t happy AT ALL at the prospect of me having to work from home – for some reason her micro-management neediness has wavered and she’s not at all ok with me working from home – the need to keep me under thumb is just an annoyance…I want to scream at this – I told her in my interview I don’t like being micro-managed and I actually don’t work well like that…but alas she doesn’t listen to anyone but herself (I vear off topic here)…so because of the suspension my hubby and I are having to put undue pressure on our co-workers and supervisors…it really is a trickle down effect.

Added to the stress of the above, Monday being Memorial Day I was off of work – UNPAID – this has to be the biggest part of my job I hate/loathe/want to scream bloody friggin murder in my boss’ face about – taking an 8hr. hit to my paycheck is the biggest issue I have.  I did manage to work two hours on Monday, but a migraine kept me from working more – and to add to it my workload has lightened considerably as our field teams are demobing from site…again that trickle down effect – which has caused me to not have enough work to fill evening hours to make-up for Monday…STRESS STRESS STRESS!!!

Adding another layer of stress to all of this – yup you guessed it – Citi has not come back to us yet with a resolution/answer on the restructure, which is putting everything else on the back burner – buying the new car, making travel plans for the summer to visit the family in MD, and possibly getting the budget squared away so that what I pay out each bill pay period is the same for Citi…I sincerely hate that.  Each week we get a canned form letter email from our ‘Homeowner Support Specialist’ telling us there’s no update other than it’s with the final layer of underwriters – we’ve gotten the SAME email from that idiot for the last three weeks…so what are they doing? Sleeping on it? Or are they just that busy? I would prefer it if he’d just tell us that they are busy and have an abnormally large number of cases they are working on vs. the canned response  I’ve been getting.  I finally sent him a message this morning asking for something more concrete, I highly doubt I’ll get a response.

So to say that my life is a royal friggin mess is a vast understatement – the only highlight I’ve had is that my Guest Spot for the Adult Rated Blog went live yesterday, you can visit that here:  All’s Not Fair in Love and Finance I am Super Excited about this!

Alright onto why we’re here the budget – so due to the above listed circumstances surrounding Austin’s suspension his tuition next week is less (and yes I think the last two days should be carried over to next week, I’ve paid it so theoretically I shouldn’t have to pay for next week either…) so you’ll see that.  It’s a bill pay week, but our pay is so much less that it has been due to a shortage of work for Overtime (SUCKS SUCKS SUCKS!!!) so here we go:

 $208.85 Remaining from W/E 05/19/13  $543.31 Lara W/E 05/26/13 Salary
 $82.09 Amt. Spent  $218.40 Jimmy W/E 05/26/13 Salary
 $126.76 Avail. Starting  $761.71
 $21.64 World Market  $126.76 Avail. Starting
 $13.23 Target  $761.71 Total Pay
 $8.46 Pier 1  $888.47 Avail. For Bills
 $5.34 McDonald’s  $170.00 In From Savings for Car Payment
 $4.48 McDonald’s  $1,058.47
 $4.17 Barnes & Nobles Café
 $3.20 McDonald’s
 $4.97 KTC
 $1.00 Target
 $9.51 Rite-Aid
 $6.09 Shop & Go
 $82.09

I’ve had to “Borrow” $170.00 from the car down payment account in order to cover the car payment this month due to Citi’s lack of action – I had hoped to have a resolution by now, but alas that has not happened – so now we have to repay that money…thankfully, or not as the case may be, my UDR Employee Purchase plan has to be cashed out, that’s roughly $150 that’ll be coming to us within the next 10-days or so that’ll put some of that back…though I wish they could have turned it into public stock…but nope…UGH!

 $1,058.47
 $25.00 DB Plumbing
 $1,033.47
 $55.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $978.47
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $973.47
 $48.00 Great Lakes, 6/3 Auto-Draft
 $925.47
 $170.00 Groceries
 $755.47
 $40.00 Gas
 $715.47
 $25.00 Cat & Dog Food
 $690.47
 $25.00 Jimmy’s Money
 $665.47
 $25.00 Dinner, 5/31
 $640.47
 $337.00 Credit Acceptance
 $303.47
 $250.00 CitiMortgage
 $53.47  $53.47
7%  $3.74
 $3.74  $49.73

And now with the Cash withdrawal:

 $1,058.47
 $25.00 DB Plumbing
 $1,033.47
 $55.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $978.47
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $973.47
 $48.00 Great Lakes, 6/3 Auto-Draft
 $925.47
 $337.00 Credit Acceptance
 $588.47
 $250.00 CitiMorgage
 $338.47
 $300.00 Cash for Week
 $38.47
 $3.74 Merrill Acct Transfer
 $34.73

To say I am not happy with this is a vast understatement – hoping next pay period I can make some kind of payment to the utilities!

Well enough from Me! Have a Good Weekend Everyone!

TGIF TGIF TGIF!!! Can you just hear the song bouncing through your head?? No Well then here you go:

 

I just Love Not Only that today is Friday BUT I also got off work at 2 today…which means some freedom before picking up the kids from Brigades…which means some time for Mommy to just chill at home ALONE what a concept?!?! Oh and yes thank-you to my wonderful Service Managers I was able to key 8.0 hrs. for the day…

Ok enough about that, the down side is that while we got out at 2 today and I got 8 hrs for today, Monday is an entirely different story.  It’s Memorial Day Weekend, and while some will be enjoying BBQ’s or going to the beach or doing other things I’ll  be working…why? Because I can’t afford to lose a whole days pay…nevermind that we should be remembering the reason behind Memorial Day, our Brave soldiers who have fought & died for this country…ugh it’s that double-edged sword that’ll get ya every single friggin time!  So I am a tad bitter about that side of it.  It’s just one holiday on top of the many others I’ll have to work…

Anyhew, this week’s budget is pretty simplified because it’s a Nonbill week so what is being paid is just minimal at best…The only odd-ball bill this week is the car tax, $29.30 for that, thankfully that’s only once a year we have to pay that, and in four short months a reminder for the inspection and registration will arrive.  I am so hoping to have a new car long before then, but we shall see.

Alright onto the budget:

 $61.01 Remaining from W/E 05/12/13  $594.03 Lara W/E 05/19/13 Salary
 $29.39 Amt. Spent    $236.97 Jimmy W/E 05/19/13 Salary
 $31.62 Avail. Starting    $831.00      
               
 $1.92 Office Max    $31.62 Avail. Starting  
 $3.27 KTC      $831.00 Total Pay    
 $6.96 Claires      $862.62 Avail. For Bills  
 $6.16 McDonald’s          
 $3.20 Michaels            
 $2.77 AT&T            
 $5.11 PetsMart            
 $29.39              

And first the line item breakdown – it’s that time of year again for Fleas, and my poor Dog Nixon is covered in them, so we are budgeting this week for Flea Meds (they get dormant in the winter so we don’t treat him for them, I know we should, but it’s $60 I cannot spare…please I know…) and then tomorrow he’s getting the dreaded bath LOL!! He hates bath time, but oh well…And because LCA (LabCorp) Rec’d their final payment last week, I have upped the amount being sent to DB Plumbing by the LCA Payment amount in hopes we can pay that off sooner rather than later.  Also, we’re paying Austin’s deposit for Summer Camp this week so Brigades jumps up that $40.00.

 $862.62      
 $25.00 DB Plumbing  
 $837.62      
 $110.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $727.62      
 $5.00 OT Solutions  
 $722.62      
 $17.00 Savings for Car  
 $705.62      
 $64.47 State Farm, 5/26 Auto-Draft
 $641.15      
 $5.00 CCA, 05/27 Auto-Draft
 $636.15      
 $58.00 CFPUA    
 $578.15      
 $29.30 NC Tax Dept, Vehicle Tax
 $548.85      
 $170.00 Groceries    
 $378.85      
 $40.00 Gas    
 $338.85      
 $25.00 Cat & Dog Food  
 $313.85      
 $25.00 Jimmy’s Money  
 $288.85      
 $25.00  Dinner, 5/24   
 $263.85      
 $50.00 Flea Meds for Nixon  
 $213.85      

And with the lump sum cash withdrawl, which came to $335.00 so I’ve rounded it up to $340.00:

 $862.62      
 $25.00 DB Plumbing  
 $837.62      
 $110.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $727.62      
 $5.00 OT Solutions  
 $722.62      
 $17.00 Savings for Car  
 $705.62      
 $64.47 State Farm, 5/26 Auto-Draft
 $641.15      
 $5.00 CCA, 05/27 Auto-Draft
 $636.15      
 $58.00 CFPUA    
 $578.15      
 $29.30 NC Tax Dept, Vehicle Tax
 $548.85      
 $340.00 Cash for Week  
 $208.85      

That’s all folks! I am told my guest spot on the Adult Rated Blog will be Live next week, once it is I’ll share with everyone to see!!

Have a Good Weekend, Stay Safe and Until Next Time!

Well we did, July 2012 ours was stolen! Right from in front of our house – I won’t rehash the whole story, but the gist of it is this – went grocery shopping in the morning, dropped hubby off at work right from Grocery store, came home unloaded the groceries with the help of the kiddos, sometime during the afternoon while I was out back with the kids in their wading pool I heard tires squealing away from in front of the house, not thinking anything of it as it’s a semi-regular occurrence in the summer in my neighborhood we went about the rest of our day – got the kids inside from swimming, got them dressed, settled in for the afternoon/evening – later that night my hubby comes home from work, abt 10:00 – 10:15 pm, asks me where the cars at, I’m like ‘what?’ – it was then we figured out the car was stolen…

Here’s the kicker – the ignition key was left in the ignition – I must’ve left it there when unloading the groceries, was the car locked, probably not as we hadn’t had cause the lock them previously, windows were down (one would say we were practically inviting it – doesn’t matter, I could have left the damn thing running, doesn’t give anyone the right to take it)…it was summer, it was hot, so of course we didn’t think on it…too trusting perhaps….stupid, maybe…either way it shouldn’t have been stolen!

Cops were called, report was filed – called insurance filed a claim with them, life is on hold until car is recovered 5-days later…arsehole who was caught with the car tosses key into River (we only had the one) and threatens to jump into the river himself – it’s a whole elaborate operation with the Fire boat being called in to prevent this from happening, Jimmy goes with cops/tow truck to recover car, after its dusted for finger prints…file follow-up claim with insurance.

To get to the point of the matter – it seems that everyone involved is somehow pointing the finger at us, making us feel like we’re the ones who did it, we’re the ones to blame and we set the whole thing up – I will admit I HATE our car, but we NEED it – and until it’s replaced we’re stuck with it…it’s the only one we have…so why in the world would we do such a thing.  Yes, I know people do it all the time…but STILL!! Are people who work in insurance and now the Public Defender’s office naturally suspicious?

This comes about because I just had a brief interview with the investigator for the Public Defender’s office – and he asked me to recount everything I remember from that day – was it  possible that the guys who stole it maybe a friend of a friend, had I ever seen them before (answer to both is a resounding NO, going to have to say I don’t hang around any thugs, which is what these two basically are), had we ever or would we ever loan our car to someone, um NO!  Could we possibly know them from work? Again, NO!  We don’t know many people in town, and those we do know, we don’t know all that well, we don’t know their groups of people they hang with.  Were we discussing the car earlier in the day/week with anyone, again NO!  I just got the feeling that, while he was doing his job, he was suspicious of the fact that the keys were in the ignition, windows were down, and the car wasn’t reported stole for about 8 hrs. after the fact…again the timeline isn’t perfect as I didn’t check the clock when we came in from the pool or when I heard the squealing of the tires…we didn’t go outside again,  I didn’t go check the mail, it was 100+ degrees and I wasn’t about to go anywhere else…

I guess I am just a tad put off by this whole experience…and yes it’s made me very paranoid with the car now, it’s always locked, we got the ignition keys replaced (along with a new locking system), windows are always up, etc…but MAN! Can this please be done?!?!?!  I am starting to think we might need a Lawyer – I can’t afford one, but STILL?!?!?

You know it seems to me that every time I think we’re ok, we get pushed behind…now that’s not to say that we’re 100% behind the eight ball so to speak here, it’s just that we were cruising along ok for awhile, then we get benefits through my husband’s employer and while we’re happy about that, it would be immensely helpful to have that money in our budget each week – I try to deflect by keeping up with the overtime, but that’ll only truly last us through the end of June if we’re lucky then it’ll die down over the summer and pick back up again in the fall die down at Christmas and pick up again in the spring – it’s cyclical with the outage seasons.  That being the case, we have to try and get ahead while we’re getting that extra money, and maintain during the down times, while rough it’s doable.  I just keep telling myself this, that’s what keeps me rolling, that and the possibility of building up the EF Accounts.  With that said I think what we’ve decided to do for now is the take the $115 cash we have and dump it into the Merrill Account – I am going to speak with my previous employer, who is a financial planner, and see if he can make some suggestions on diversifying that money so it begins to make money, instead of staying parked at just Cash.

This weeks budget has me on edge – I am not pleased whatsoever with it, nor am I happy that so much seems to be going out all at once – the car payment you’ll notice is missing, why? Well we’re still holding onto hope that we’ll be able to purchase something new at the start of next month, if not the the funds we have sitting for a down payment will be used to pay the car payment and then we’ll re-organize to rebuild that money back up in hopes we can maybe hold off for awhile and pay down more on our current loan before trying again later this year (that is if the car we have lasts that long…we shall see)…right now it all hinges on Citi’s Decision which we have yet to get…ha that rhymed…I have to follow-up with them today.

Alright so here we go, the budget this week:

 $165.72 Remaining from W/E 04/28/13  $538.89 Lara W/E 05/12/13 Salary
 $51.00 Amt. Spent  $229.50 Jimmy W/E 05/12/13 Salary
 $114.72 Avail. Starting  $768.39
 $8.58 Wal-Mart  $114.72 Avail. Starting
 $7.49 Amazon.com  $768.39 Total Pay
 $6.40 McDonalds  $883.11 Avail. For Bills
 $5.10 WilcoHess
 $5.00 To Ashley’s Savings
 $4.68 KTC
 $6.11 Target
 $3.05 Target
 $4.59 Rite Aid
 $51.00

Ok again first the line-item break down:

 $883.11
 $20.00 DB Plumbing
 $863.11
 $70.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $793.11
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $788.11
 $17.00 Savings for Car
 $771.11
 $7.99 Hulu.com, 04/21 Auto-Draft
 $763.12
 $5.00 WHA, 5/22 Auto-Draft
 $758.12
 $5.00 LCA, 5/22 Auto-Draft
 $753.12
 $21.39 Blockbuster, 5/23 Auto-Draft
 $731.73
 $170.00 Groceries
 $561.73
 $ 40.00 Gas
 $521.73
 $25.00 Cat & Dog Food
 $496.73
 $25.00 Jimmy’s Money
 $471.73
 $25.00  Dinner, 5/10
 $446.73
 $90.00  Progress Energy
 $356.73
 $275.00  Citi
 $ 81.73  $81.73
7%  $5.72
 $5.72  $76.01

And now with the lump sum cash withdrawal that seems to be staying pretty consistent week to week – can you tell we’re not doing much in the way of shopping, or other items…that’ll change soon though – the kids will need their summer wardrobes amped up before Summer Camp…that’ll mean shorts, t-shirt, and flip flops for when they are home…should be fun right?

 $883.11
 $20.00 DB Plumbing
 $863.11
 $70.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $793.11
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $788.11
 $17.00 Savings for Car
 $771.11
 $7.99 Hulu.com
 $763.12
 $5.00 WHA, 5/22 Auto-Draft
 $758.12
 $5.00 LCA, 5/22 Auto-Draft
 $753.12
 $21.39 Blockbuster, 5/23 Auto-Draft
 $731.73
 $300.00 Cash for Week
 $431.73
 $90.00 Progress Energy
 $341.73
 $275.00 Citi-Mortgage
 $66.73
 $5.72 Merrill Acct
 $61.01

So there we go! The budget for the week!  No real words of wisdom, but some good news – I’ve been asked to Guest Blog on finance for the Adult Rated Blog, and I am totally stoked about that! Can’t wait to do this – has me feeling very flattered!

So enjoy your Weeks and we shall return next week! In the mean time I am going to finish my work day, take the kiddos for our pizza dinner tonight and go hang at the beach tomorrow!

Anyone have any exciting Weekend Plans?

Another week has flown by, and work has been slowing as well – which is good, it allows me to catch up and ATTEMPT, I say ATTEMPT to get caught up…I say that because as soon as I do, there’s a boat load of more work to be done right on the tails of what I’ve just finished…Whew!

On that note I am coming up on my 3rd anniversary with my employer – and with that comes the normal frustrations I’ve had for quite sometime now – no benefits, no paid time off (this is the HUGE one), and yet no answer as to what is doing with either of those items – my ellusive boss has decided to just dodge the bullet and not give me a straight answer.  I think that it’s closing in on time to try and alter my work life so that I can find a way to not drown our forward motion financially if I should fall ill (as I did three weeks ago).  I am not going to launch into a while tirade about this, it’s been consistent for awhile now and I know in the back of my mind I am doing something to change my work life entirely – for now though it’ll be little steps…

And with that, I am just going to move forward – the budget this week is a tad strained, why? Well simply because we’re planning for Summer Camps this year and with that comes the cost of Summer Camp.  I am thankful that the Brigades Boys and Girls Club offers summer camp for their after schoolers, which is a blessing for us – so I am having to put down deposits for said camp program because we are in no way set-up to pay for the entire summer ($1,600) up front…how some of their people do that I have no clue as it’s normally lower income people who send their children there…makes sense honestly.  So this week and next I am tacking an extra $40/week onto the normal tuition to cover this deposit.

So without further adieu, here goes!

Note here, we’ve had some monies incoming, $30.00 came to us from the Nielsen Ratings Group and I had to move $10.00 in from our KTC Savings account to prevent Over Draft – seems this week everything either fell short in the grocery department, or with Jimmy being sick we were spending more $$ in meds – so that extra $40.00 is accounted for in the carry over from the previous week.

 $95.49 Remaining from W/E 04/28/13  $601.73 Lara W/E 05/05/13 Salary
 $79.00 Amt. Spent  $224.50 Jimmy W/E 05/05/13 Salary
 $16.49 Avail. Starting  $826.23
 $18.22 Target  $16.49 Avail. Starting
 $8.01 Target  $826.23 Total Pay
 $4.14 KTC Total  $842.72 Avail. For Bills
 $5.23 McDonalds
 $20.00 Check Order
 $2.09 Pets Mart
 $1.31 Wal-Mart
 $20.00 ATM Book Fair Money
 $79.00

And first the line item breakdown of expenses this week:

 $842.72
 $20.00 DB Plumbing
 $822.72
 $110.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $712.72
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $707.72
 $17.00 Savings for Car
 $690.72
 $121.00 AT&T
 $569.72
 $5.00 Tate & Kirlin, 5/10 Auto-Draft
 $564.72
 $5.00 CCA, 5/13 Auto-Draft
 $559.72
 $5.00 LCA, 5/15 Auto-Draft
 $554.72
 $89.00 AmeriNational, Austin TKD
 $465.72
 $170.00 Groceries
 $295.72
 $40.00 Gas
 $255.72
 $25.00 Cat & Dog Food
 $230.72
 $25.00  Jimmy’s Money
 $205.72
 $25.00  Dinner, 5/10
 $180.72

Truly doesn’t leave much for bills next week and that is making me Wicked Nervous as my OT Hours this week will be absolutely minimal, like 42 – 43 hours total for the week, down from 46 last week…

So now with the Cash Withdrawl, total cash required, $285.00, have to round up to $300.00 to cover everything:

 $842.72
 $20.00 DB Plumbing
 $822.72
 $110.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $712.72
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $707.72
 $17.00 Savings for Car
 $690.72
 $121.00 AT&T
 $569.72
 $5.00 Tate & Kirlin, 5/10 Auto-Draft
 $564.72
 $5.00 CCA, 5/13 Auto-Draft
 $559.72
 $5.00 LCA, 5/15 Auto-Draft
 $554.72
 $89.00 AmeriNational, Austin TKD
 $465.72
 $300.00 Cash for Week
 $165.72

So there we are! Let’s cross our fingers we don’t spend all of the remaining funds, $165.72 – with Mother’s Day on Sunday, I am going to try and keep our activities low key – so hoping the weather cooperates and we can head over to the beach (for those who don’t know, we live 20 mins away from three beaches) and just chill for a bit, that to me is the ideal way to spend Mother’s Day!

Another week has flown by, and work has been slowing as well – which is good, it allows me to catch up and ATTEMPT, I say ATTEMPT to get caught up…I say that because as soon as I do, there’s a boat load of more work to be done right on the tails of what I’ve just finished…Whew!

On that note I am coming up on my 3rd anniversary with my employer – and with that comes the normal frustrations I’ve had for quite sometime now – no benefits, no paid time off (this is the HUGE one), and yet no answer as to what is doing with either of those items – my ellusive boss has decided to just dodge the bullet and not give me a straight answer.  I think that it’s closing in on time to try and alter my work life so that I can find a way to not drown our forward motion financially if I should fall ill (as I did three weeks ago).  I am not going to launch into a while tirade about this, it’s been consistent for awhile now and I know in the back of my mind I am doing something to change my work life entirely – for now though it’ll be little steps…

And with that, I am just going to move forward – the budget this week is a tad strained, why? Well simply because we’re planning for Summer Camps this year and with that comes the cost of Summer Camp.  I am thankful that the Brigades Boys and Girls Club offers summer camp for their after schoolers, which is a blessing for us – so I am having to put down deposits for said camp program because we are in no way set-up to pay for the entire summer ($1,600) up front…how some of their people do that I have no clue as it’s normally lower income people who send their children there…makes sense honestly.  So this week and next I am tacking an extra $40/week onto the normal tuition to cover this deposit.

So without further adieu, here goes!

Note here, we’ve had some monies incoming, $30.00 came to us from the Nielsen Ratings Group and I had to move $10.00 in from our KTC Savings account to prevent Over Draft – seems this week everything either fell short in the grocery department, or with Jimmy being sick we were spending more $$ in meds – so that extra $40.00 is accounted for in the carry over from the previous week.

 $95.49 Remaining from W/E 04/28/13  $601.73 Lara W/E 05/05/13 Salary
 $79.00 Amt. Spent  $224.50 Jimmy W/E 05/05/13 Salary
 $16.49 Avail. Starting  $826.23
 $18.22 Target  $16.49 Avail. Starting
 $8.01 Target  $826.23 Total Pay
 $4.14 KTC Total  $842.72 Avail. For Bills
 $5.23 McDonalds
 $20.00 Check Order
 $2.09 Pets Mart
 $1.31 Wal-Mart
 $20.00 ATM Book Fair Money
 $79.00

And first the line item breakdown of expenses this week:

 $842.72
 $20.00 DB Plumbing
 $822.72
 $110.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $712.72
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $707.72
 $17.00 Savings for Car
 $690.72
 $121.00 AT&T
 $569.72
 $5.00 Tate & Kirlin, 5/10 Auto-Draft
 $564.72
 $5.00 CCA, 5/13 Auto-Draft
 $559.72
 $5.00 LCA, 5/15 Auto-Draft
 $554.72
 $89.00 AmeriNational, Austin TKD
 $465.72
 $170.00 Groceries
 $295.72
 $40.00 Gas
 $255.72
 $25.00 Cat & Dog Food
 $230.72
 $25.00  Jimmy’s Money
 $205.72
 $25.00  Dinner, 5/10
 $180.72

Truly doesn’t leave much for bills next week and that is making me Wicked Nervous as my OT Hours this week will be absolutely minimal, like 42 – 43 hours total for the week, down from 46 last week…

So now with the Cash Withdrawl, total cash required, $285.00, have to round up to $300.00 to cover everything:

 $842.72
 $20.00 DB Plumbing
 $822.72
 $110.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $712.72
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $707.72
 $17.00 Savings for Car
 $690.72
 $121.00 AT&T
 $569.72
 $5.00 Tate & Kirlin, 5/10 Auto-Draft
 $564.72
 $5.00 CCA, 5/13 Auto-Draft
 $559.72
 $5.00 LCA, 5/15 Auto-Draft
 $554.72
 $89.00 AmeriNational, Austin TKD
 $465.72
 $300.00 Cash for Week
 $165.72

So there we are! Let’s cross our fingers we don’t spend all of the remaining funds, $165.72 – with Mother’s Day on Sunday, I am going to try and keep our activities low key – so hoping the weather cooperates and we can head over to the beach (for those who don’t know, we live 20 mins away from three beaches) and just chill for a bit, that to me is the ideal way to spend Mother’s Day!

For those who have been reading along, you know that we have somewhere around $100 parked in between my piggy bank at work and in my drawer at home; so my dilemma is this: I want to put it into an account where it’s going to collect interest, ok easy enough, find a bank with a reasonable deposit-only interest rate and go from there – BUT here’s my dilemma – I have (2) existing savings accounts with Bank of America, but neither of which yields interest, they are straight savings accounts – who also happens to have the best deposit-only rates I’ve seen – and we also have a Merrill Lynch Mutual Bond account that has about $90.00 in it and is only in cash at present because I have ZERO Clue what to do from here….what to do? What to do?

Taking suggestions here?  I am not 100% comfortable having that much extra cash laying around, while I am very pleased that we have this saved up, and yes it’s taken quite a bit of time to accumulate, I am happy its here, but I’d feel much better if it were parked in an interest-bearing account making money vs. just sitting there so then perhaps I can figure out what my goals for that cash will be. Ideally it would be for that emergency cushion we’re always being preached we should have, therefore, I know we should have at LEAST (2) months salary saved for emergencies, ok so that would be about $6,868.78 (taking the sum total of our paychecks from the last four weeks each and adding them together then multiplying by two) – which will be easier to reach if said funds were making money in interest.

Suggestions….PLEASE!!!!

I need to figure out what to do with this cash I have sitting around – do I dump it into one of our existing accounts? Or do I open yet a 3rd savings account with BoA.

and

I need to figure out what to do with the $90.00 I have sitting in the Merrill Account – this account is supposed to be for our retirement as neither of us has a 401K…

HELP!!!!

Happy Friday Everyone! I am looking forward to this weekend for one reason and one reason only – REST! I have managed to catch my hubby’s cold and now my head feels like it weighs 1,000 lbs and I am foggy and hazy, not a good feeling honestly.  Tired, is probably the best way to describe how I feel most, just plum tired.  So am hoping to make the next four hours of work just fly by so I can get the weekend started with a few errands before just chillin’ at home with the kids tonight…lets hope it works out.

Alright, first and foremost a huge shout out to everyone who has been reading my blogs!! OMG they have blown up this week and I am soo very happy about that! I couldn’t be more please! This one especially has been busy and for that I am amazed! We got our first follower yesterday, Simply Money, I am hoping between the two of us those who pop in here will be able to launch over there to garner some of her advice along with learning from our mis-steps if they happen!  Or get something from one of my rants, discussions, etc.

That being said – I did venture to Merrill Lynch’s website from BoA’s and was attempting to make heads or tails of the investment information they have there so when I am at the point of wanting to purchase stocks/bonds/securities I have some idea of what I am looking at, but MAN was I overwhelmed, think it might be beneficial to bring help in on that one when it’s time!  A professional so to speak, thankfully I know someone who can help!

Alright, here’s the budget for the week – once again I am blown away with the amount of outgoing money from our account, I just simply cannot wrap my head around it…then again paying bills will do that to you:

 $370.89 Remaining from W/E 04/21/13  $556.41 Lara W/E 04/28/13 Salary
 $103.93 Amt. Spent  $273.12 Jimmy W/E 04/28/13 Salary
 $266.96 Avail. Starting  $829.53
 $11.32 PetsMart  $266.96 Avail. Starting
 $10.04 Wal-Mart  $829.53 Total Pay
 $6.02 KTC Total  $1,096.49 Avail. For Bills
 $29.96 Sunoco $6.07 Adj. From Bank
 $8.20 McDonalds  $1,090.42
 $6.24 Sweet Frog
 $4.64 Chick Fil-A
 $3.71 Everybody’s
 $6.65 Wal-Mart
 $6.78 Wal-Mart
 $4.50 Target
 $5.87 Rite-Aid
 $103.93

This week was also our first week with the benefits money being pulled from Jimmy’s pay, thus the reason there’s a bigger difference in his pay for the week vs. last week and prior with his pay floating around $305.00 vs. the $272.00 he received this week. What has also got my attention the most is the $103.93 we spent between weeks…oy not happy about that AT ALL!  This will be something to make sure we don’t repeat on the next bi-week.

 $1,090.42
 $20.00 DB Plumbing
 $1,070.42
 $60.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $1,010.42
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $1,005.42
 $17.00 Savings for Car
 $988.42
 $48.00 Great Lakes, Auto-Draft 5/3
 $940.42
 $5.00 LCA, 05/08 Auto-Draft
 $935.42
 $170.00 Groceries
 $765.42
 $40.00 Gas
 $725.42
 $25.00 Dinner, 04/26/13
 $700.42
 $25.00 Jimmy’s Money
 $675.42
 $25.00 Cat & Dog Food
 $650.42
 $170.00 Credit Acceptance
 $480.42
 $60.00  Progress Energy
 $420.42
 $325.00  CitiMortgage
 $95.42
 $25.00  Ashley New Shoes
 $70.42  $70.42
7%  $4.93
 $4.93  $65.49

And now with the cash withdrawal:

 $1,090.42
 $20.00 DB Plumbing
 $1,070.42
 $60.00 Brigades Boys & Girls Club
 $1,010.42
 $5.00 OT Solutions
 $1,005.42
 $17.00 Savings for Car
 $988.42
 $48.00 Great Lakes, Auto-Draft 5/3
 $940.42
 $5.00 LCA, 05/08 Auto-Draft
 $935.42
 $320.00 Cash for Week
 $615.42
 $170.00 Credit Acceptance
 $445.42
 $60.00 Progress Energy
 $385.42
 $325.00 CitiMortgage
 $60.42
 $4.93 Merrill Savings
 $55.49

So that’s where we are at right now – no real words of wisdom for anecdotes – but I will say this, I am truly getting sick and tired of not having paid time off…being sick right now I’d love to be able to be at home and just be sick, but I can’t…I am being sick at work, lets hope I don’t muck something up royally!

TTFN All!

As promised from yesterday, I am going to explain how we track our bills – it’s a threefold process really, the first part of the process was to collect them all in one location, which we’ve done.  I have all of the bills in what I call current status in a folder, once paid off it’ll get filed with the other bills we’ve paid off – they each have a piece of blank paper attached to them with any necessary notes on them, an example cover page looks like this:

CitiMortgage, Account# XXXXXXXXX (Not going to list it here obviously)

Statement Date: 04/17/2013

Amount Due: $5,234.00 (this is a rough estimate, I don’t have the bill in front of me currently)

Date Due: 05/01/2013

Below this information I track the payments made since receiving my statement, these are pulled from the budgets and the checkbook:

04/22/13                     $400.00 paid                                Bal. Due: $4,834.00

This process repeats every bi-week we pay bills that way I can track what is being paid, what’s been paid and how much is left remaining, specifically for items I am paying down on, like DB Plumbing which has a balance due of roughly $324.00 to be paid off by the end of the summer – I use this to track how many more payments I have to make and when I can switch that allocation to another bill to then begin paying that down quicker, ex: when DB Plumbing is done, I’ll then allocate that $20.00/week over to LabCorp’s collections agency to pay off that $350.00 faster, once that’s done it’ll roll over into something else and so on and so on.

The second part of this process is done utilizing a day planner (an online calendar works as well) – On the day I receive a bill, in my day planner in Red ink I notate on the due date the vendor/creditor and how much is due, then on the Friday’s I count how many are between the date the bill is received and the due date and figure out how much I’ll need to allocate to each bi-week bill pay day;

Ex: Credit Acceptance, I know this bill is due every month on the 6th – there’s generally 4-Fridays between each due date, the total amount due each month is $336.98 – I take that divide by 2 and the end result is roughly $170.00/bi-week (I use whole  numbers when paying bills, pennies are a nuisance I don’t take into account), so then I notate that on the calendar on the Friday I pay bills, which is this Friday the 3rd, so then the next one will be on the 17th and then the 31st and so on.

The same process pans out for each bill due, generally those received through the month are the utilities, and they fluctuate but I find a way to pay them.  So when I received our Progress Energy bill I put it on that paper in the bills folder, then notated it on my calendar counting the Fridays between and figured out how much was due each bi-week to prevent shut off (we’re short paying this just to prevent shut off because of the mass amount of other money going out from our account right now – not only to stay current with the car, but to keep funds going to CitiMortgage.

The third part is any pre-scheduled drafts from our bank account each month, like my student loans, Austin’s TKD payment and the other $5.00 bills we pay each week – at the start of the year I sat down with my day planner and using the ‘bill pay’ screen on Bank of America’s website I wrote down each payment on the draft date so I wouldn’t forget them – we have a lot that is pre-scheduled for draft each month and I found I was forgetting them…not cool!

All three of these processes are then carried over when doing the budget each week – seems more time consuming that it truly is!

Alright quickly as this is getting long winded – the checkbook:

Some people choose to use the register that comes with their checks, others use some computer oriented program (like quicken or even mint.com) we use a spiral notebook to do our checkbook – it’s just easier this way for me.  It works like any other checkbook would, the debits, bills, deposits, etc. are recorded and balanced against the bank account every Friday.  However,  I’ve chosen to color code the transactions so I know immediately what’s what without having to actually read the item:

Green – These items are any debit card purchases made between pay periods (note these are the items I  deduct from the previous week’s remaining budgetary funds), as well as any KTC (keep the change) transfers and bank account transfers to and from Savings

Purple – Deposits (paychecks, gifts for birthdays, etc.)

Red – Bills, any and all bills paid, or are scheduled to be paid

Blue – Transactions pending on payday, this is JUST for Fridays

My checkbook is rather colorful, but it’s the easiest way for me to track everything!

That’s about it everyone! Hope this has been helpful!